As well as hydrates, many times fats are abused in our diet and eliminated from it, especially when we are looking to lose weight. However, today we show you the seven benefits of fat consumption and we show that they are really necessary for your body.
What are fats and what are their functions
Fats are along with proteins and hydrates, one of the energy macronutrients in our diet, and although the main fuels are hydrates, fats also represent a good source of energy for the body, especially when the previous ones are exhausted.
Similarly, fats have other functions in our body such as vehiculizar vitamins and other fat-soluble compounds such as some drugs.
On the other hand, in our body fats are not only a great energy reserve, but are part of cells of the nervous system, are necessary for the development of hormones and also help regulate body temperature serving as an insulator as well as support of many organs for which, they are a protection.
Seven benefits of fat consumption
Fats are necessary in our body and choosing the right ones can offer the following benefits :
- Facilitate the absorption of liposoblubles vitamins such as vitamin A, E, D and K.
- To favor the thinning if we choose unsaturated fats in replacement of others like saturated or trans fats, even without modifying the calories of the diet as it indicates a study of scientists of Australia .
- Help prevent diseases , since unsaturated fats such as omega 3 for example, have an anti-inflammatory effect that favors the functioning of the retina and brain, as well as moving us away from cardiovascular pathologies, atherosclerosis and others, as published research concludes in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition .
- Contribute to increase lean mass and reduce body fat as has been proven with the consumption of fish oil and also, with the intake of nuts. This means that it can improve our body composition helping to prevent diseases and also, to achieve a body in shape.
- Improve physical performance by promoting motor coordination and increase aerobic strength and endurance as shown above.
- Conserving adequate sexual functions, since fats are part of hormones and an alteration in them can be linked to endocrine changes that affect basic sexual functions.
- To make our diet more flexible, as well as sustainable over time and palatable , since fats provide palatability to our dishes.
Different types of fats: learn to differentiate them
Among the different fats that we find distributed in food, it is essential to distinguish their type or quality, since not all of them have a beneficial effect on the organism.
Thus, we can distinguish three large groups: saturated, unsaturated and trans fats. The first ones were those that placed the accused’s bench for a long timeand are widely distributed in foods of animal origin, although there are also in the vegetable world as is the case of palm oil that we should restrict in our diet or the coconut oil with saturated fatty acids too, but of better quality.
Today we know that saturated fats are not the most harmful and are not responsible for cardiovascular problems as we thought before. On the contrary, the latest consensus on the consumption of fats for the Spanish population does not indicate a maximum limit for their intake.
Unsaturated fats are those that predominate in plant foods and within them we must distinguish monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats , among the first is the omega 9 that can help prevent dyslipidemia and protect the cardiovascular system by raising good cholesterol or HDL in the organism , while the second are composed of omega 3 and omega 6 among which there must be a balance to benefit health.
And finally, trans fats that are minimal in natural foods, are not the same as the artificial fats that abound in processed foods because they originate industrially and can harm health and increase the risk of disease by having an inflammatory effect in our body.
Where do we find healthy fats
As we showed before, there are different types of fats and we should always prioritize the consumption of the most healthy ones for our body, so, here are some alternatives to add them to the diet:
- Nuts and seeds : are source of polyunsaturated fatty acids among which alpha linolenic acid predominates as well as, they contribute monounsaturated fats. We can add chia seeds, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, flax seeds, sesame seeds or others and also incorporate a variety of nuts into the diet such as almonds, hazelnuts, walnuts and others.
- Vegetable oils : they are the source of unsaturated fatty acids, most of them, with the exception of palm and coconut oil, as we previously mentioned, have saturated fats, above all. Among these, include the oils of seeds and nuts as well as extra virgin olive oil that is locally produced and has very good qualities.
- Fish oil : is a food rich in essential omega 3 fatty acids , that is, in our body can not occur, hence the importance of its consumption that can also benefit cardiovascular health in different ways.
- Fatty fish : like fish oil, blue or fatty fish such as tuna, sardines, anchovies, bonito, horse mackerel and the like have polyunsaturated fats essential for the body and therefore, are recommended as part of a diet healthy.
- Avocado and olives : they are fresh oily fruits, they are not very caloric like dried fruits and are a source of unsaturated fatty acids, especially omega 9 with aniinflammatory power in our body.